OBU conferred undergraduate degrees upon 249 students during its 102nd Spring Commencement Friday, May 13. The event took place on the OBU campus in Shawnee.
The graduating students took their symbolic final walk across the campus as OBU students when they filed into Raley Chapel's Potter Auditorium for the 3 p.m. ceremony. The walk mirrored one many of the graduates took during their first week as students. Dressed in academic regalia, the graduates proceeded from the Geiger Center to the chapel, passing through rows of OBU faculty members before reaching the chapel's east steps.
Shane Hall, OBU alumnus and pastor of First Southern Baptist Church of Del City, delivered the commencement address. During the ceremony, the University honored Paul Milburn, J. Thomas Terry and Rev. Dr. Eric Mayes, Jr. with honorary doctorates.
The University also presented its top three honors for faculty and staff members. Dr. Louima Lilite, associate professor of music, received the Distinguished Teaching Award. Bill Pope, OBU’s staff photographer, received the Meritorious Service Award. Dr. Tawa Anderson, assistant professor of philosophy and director of the honors program, received the Promising Teacher Award.
Hall challenged the students to be prepared for life to interrupt their plans. “Your dreams may be altered. Your plans may be changed. You may be forgotten by this world. But as long as you are honored and remembered by God, what greater accomplishment can you have than that?”
He gave the graduates one key to leaving an eternal legacy. “If you want a life that is honored and if you want a life that is remembered, then lose your life to Jesus Christ.”